Canada's premiers to highlight agendas at opening of New Brunswick meeting

Federico Mansilla
Julio 21, 2018

"Ontario will join forces with Saskatchewan and use every tool at its disposal to challenge the federal carbon tax", Ford said during a news conference on the sidelines of a meeting of Canada's 10 provincial premiers.

"Ontario will support Saskatchewan in intervening in the reference case they have launched with the (Saskatchewan) Court of Appeal". "Attacking carbon pricing without an alternative plan to address climate change is nothing less than an unprovoked attack on our kids' future".

"The parliamentary budget office has indicated that we could spend considerably less if we were to make certain changes and find efficiencies for example in bulk purchasing and other areas", said Hoskins.

Ontario's new Progressive Conservative government has appointed a former British Columbia premier to lead an independent inquiry into the previous Liberal government's spending. "We have two provinces in compliance, we have two provinces in court and we have the rest of the country not meeting the federal carbon tax backstop".

Earlier this year Saskatchewan announced it was taking the federal government to court over the impending tax.

The Trudeau government's plan will protect the environment and grow the economy, she added.

"It's never going to be a distraction to discuss this very important and also very complex subject", said Gallant.

He reiterated his province would remain committed to its carbon plan, while at the same time monitoring what other provinces ultimately do.

Ford also later joined Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard and Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister in calling for more help from the federal government in dealing with asylum seekers who cross their borders.

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Horgan said carbon pricing has proven beneficial to his province and he wanted to use the meeting to educate his counterparts on its effect on B.C.'s economy.

"We've got to do the best we can to prepare, to minimize and mitigate those challenges", he said, "but there will be challenges, and the best thing we can do is have the federal government have a robust awareness program and enhance the efforts that they've put in so far". "We have record levels of growth, record levels of employment with carbon pricing, so those who say that the two are incompatible - we are the living proof of the opposite".

The provincial leaders are expected to discuss a range of other topics, including the US trade dispute, health care, the announced pullout of Greyhound from bus routes in Western Canada, and the skirmish between Alberta and British Columbia over the Trans Mountain pipeline project.

At a meeting of the country's 13 premiers that ended Friday at a picturesque resort on Canada's east coast, the provincial and territorial leaders talked about U.S.

"We need to do the next step which is to reach out to individual Americans", he said.

Manitoba's Brian Pallister said the agreement as it stands is important in the face of measures by U.S. President Donald Trump when it comes to cross-border trade.

"We are looking forward to implementing our own internal cap and trade system, which will continue to reduce greenhouse gases while at the same time protecting the pocketbooks of Nova Scotians", he said.

All three premiers want Ottawa to review its current policy, and they also called on the federal government to fully compensate them for "impacts to services resulting from the increase in non-point of entry border crossings".

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